Sunday, February 19, 2012

Monograming my home

So after my beginning work on the living room, I decided to continue by adding our family initial to the decor. I did this two different ways. The first way was to spice up our existing evergreen wreath from Christmas with a non-holiday look. I changed the wreath from including a red bow and snowy pine cones with berries to a simple green wreath with our initial. Here's a look at the final piece. I'm in love with it!
 I started with a simple wood letter that I bought at Hobby Lobby for about a $1.
 I spray painted it white (making sure to cover the edges and sides) and, once dry, I then used Command hooks to hang it on the wreath.
 I'm completely in love with the way this looks and I'm so glad it was incredibly simple to do.
 Of course, this isn't all I did with our monogram. Prior to painting it, I used it as a stencil and traced it onto some styrofoam board (we had some in our garage from a package that we'd received and it was used as packing foam). My objective was to create a moss covered letter to add something natural looking into the living room.

So, after cutting out the letter of the foam I also traced it to some light brown card stock to use as a backing for the letter. That way, if hanging on a mirror, no one would see the reflection of some bright white foam. I then started to use the hot glue gun to attach the moss to the letter. I used moss (not moss sheets) I had bought from Michaels (using their 40% off coupon of course).

 I made sure to cover the top and sides then I had to go back around the letter to touch up any white spots I could see. I'm pretty meticulous and wanted to ensure it was fully covered so I would say this took me an entire Sunday afternoon to make.

Once finished and the glue was dried I used some clear window suction cups with hooks to hang the letter on my mirror. (sorry about the below photo being so dark- I plan to post a better one)
I'm not quite finished with it yet only because I want to include a ribbon to make it look like the letter is hanging from the mirror on a hook. Once I have that piece complete I'll share an updated photo.

You may be able to see, in the reflection of the photo above, a hint at my next post...a wall of frames. Boy was that a project!

Saturday, February 18, 2012

Busy Bee!

Sometimes I wonder how things change from simple to complicated so quickly. I start out with a small project and it leads to something else which leads to something else and before you know it, the small project I planned to do has led to 5 projects that took a week and a half. I think there's some good and bad to those scenarios. It's great because I had fun creating some really cool things but it's not so good because I don't always stop to take a break and breath. So with all this time I've not been posting, I've been busy making things.

Over the next few days, I'll be posting what I've been doing the last month and a half. First, I'll start off with my lamp shade and pillow make-over.

I had bought some barrel lamp shades from Target quite a while ago and just left them as is. Recently I've needed some color in our living room so I added a small change to the lamp which I think looks so cool!



I took some brown and blue ribbon and attached it with some fabric glue. I really love the little bit of color it adds to the room when the lamp is on or off.

Now on to my pillow makeover. I've had the original pillows for at least 5 years and the wear was beginning to show so I needed to do something to give it a new look. I decided I would give the sweater pillow look a try. I went to Salvation Army and found a nice white sweater for 1.99.


I turned the sweater wrong-side out and sewed the bottom of the sweater together. I then turned it right-side out and placed the pillow inside to get an idea of the size needed and where to cut. Once I marked where I needed to cut I took the pillow out and added 1/4 inch to my cut markings. From there I began to cut off the extra material not needed. For me my markings told me to cut about 5 inches below the collar and make sure the sleeves were cut as well. I turned the sweater wrong-side out again began to sew the opening together leaving about 7 inches un-sewed. I then turned the sweater right-side out and stuffed the pillow inside the sweater through the 7 inch opening. In order to close up that 7 inch opening I turned the ends in and used a whip stitch. Once that was complete, my pillow was ready for the couch!

Two simple projects that made me feel our living room was evolving! I love it!!

Tuesday, January 3, 2012

Granola Gifts

One of my gifts to some friends/family happened to be homemade granola. I have to say, I loved making this and it tasted amazing!!

After researching granola recipes I ended up creating my own. Most recipes I found were either too complicated or too many odd ingredients that I didn't have in our kitchen. So, here's my recipe:

Homemade Granola

4 cups old-fashioned rolled oats
2 cups sweetened shredded coconut
2 cups sliced almonds
½ cup sunflower seeds
¼ tsp salt
½ tsp pumpkin spice
¾ cup wheat germ with cinnamon and flax seed
*Mix the above in a large bowl and set aside

½ cup melted butter
¾ cup honey
1 Tbsp vanilla
*Mix the above wet ingredients in a small bowl

Pour the wet ingredients into the dry and mix well.

Pour the mixture onto baking sheet and bake for 10 min. Remove from oven and stir mixture around. Bake for another 8-10 min until light golden brown. Remove from oven and pour onto parchment paper to cool for 5-10 min.

Once cool, stir in dried fruit.
½ cup dried cherries
½ cup dried cranberries
½ cup dried blueberries
½ cup dried apricots

Makes about 5 cups. Enjoy!

You may know, from a prior post, I had created my own basil pesto and frozen it for later use in my meals. Well, I have an update for you.  I made my own pasta dinner with the frozen pesto and the meal received Beans approval :) It was a success!

Bowtie Pesto Pasta 

2 cups uncooked bowtie pasta
3/4 cup shredded turkey breast (used deli meat since I didn't have shredded on hand)
1/2 cup basil pesto (2-3 cubes frozen pesto)
1/2 cup chopped roasted red bell peppers
1 small can sliced black olives

*Cook and drain pasta as directed on pkg
*Mix hot cooked pasta, turkey, pesto and bell peppers in same saucepan. Heat over low heat, stirring constantly, until hot and pesto cubes are melted.
*Add olives and serve.

I hope you enjoy these recipes as much as my family and I have! Happy New Year and best wishes for a safe and healthy one!